July 2022

 Scar Tissue in Athletes


Scar tissue forms after damaged tissue heals. It is a natural response to the healing process. Scar tissue is tough, dense fibrous tissue that is comparatively less functional than the tissue that it replaces. Ways in which scar tissue can form:

Acute: traumatic sprain/strain injuries
Chronic: low-force repetitive injuries

Chronic, repetitive movements are more commonly responsible for injuries that just seem to “come out of nowhere”. 
 Examples include: 
  • Athletic participation 
  • Occupational demands 
  • Postural habits 
The following are ways scar tissue can affect the biomechanics of muscles, ligaments and tendons:
  • Decreases lengthening ability
  • Decreases speed of contraction 
  • Decreases force production 
  • Alters or restricts joint motion 

Scar tissue can alter a nerve’s ability to glide past surrounding structures, causing it to become entrapped. Symptoms may include:
  • Numbness 
  • Tingling 
  • Burning 
  • Weakness 
The following methods can be used to break down restrictive scar tissue:
  • Active Release Techniques® 
  • Deep tissue massage/sports massage 
  • Foam rolling 
  • The Stick/Tiger Tail 
The best time to incorporate stretching, strengthening, and stabilizing exercises is after the soft-tissue dysfunctions are addressed.

To prevent soft-tissue dysfunctions:
  • Allow adequate time to recover between repetitive activities 
  • Vary types of activity – cross training 
  • Focus on soft-tissue health 
  • Strengthening/stabilizing exercises

Active Performance Chiropractic focuses on the diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of athletic-related injuries.  Treatment is a unique blend of Active Release Techniques, traditional chiropractic therapy, and physical rehabilitation designed to match each patient's goals and lifestyle.